For a short hour (chips from Fyodor Dostoevsky)

for a short hour

old age is not always a blessing

not cunning

love at cock’s crow

many many Betsy’s

not a bird

by one,  by two

forever playing cards

a window to myself

compounded by trifles

a fly could break me with a wing


in need of nothing

but geraniums

as good as poetry


the same ink stain

Born to fly backwards (gusts from Edmund Gosse)

born to fly backwards

not young, solitary

a decay in energy

Rousseau forbade

irregular pleasures

the brethren simply

neither knew nor cared

the green swallowed

bold carnation and black tresses


denizens of Babylon

of one mind

arrogance of potpourri

her high bed

long, long

unfixed, uncertain

in a cold fog

serene and sensible

no rebellion, no repining

my lamb

in Bristol

for a little while, no history


Pushkin at table (tidbits from Sara Wheeler)

eating caviar with my fingers

a Russian not in the news

Pushkin at table

male friendship

only when he had a sexually transmitted disease

the flagging cause

the color of corn flakes

Irena broke into a poem

eight time zones from Petersburg

treading on toes

his one hundredth-fifteenth love

slush and mud in April

roads and idiots

the butterscotch light of later summer evening


chestnut and willow

black beetles by the bushel

six fits a week

his sponging stepson

Missing top teeth (cavities from Helene Stapinski)

died on Ash Wednesday

fresh blue and purple bruises

‘shut your trap’

to Meadow View

yellow hallways

soggy pot roast

Vince swept

skinny arms were

his missing top teeth


and whistle

lucky 50/50 raffles


part smirk

to play house

everyone’s wake

bus to the Senior Prom

daddy’s swag


passing our Parish by